Town Honors Highway Employee Hero At John J. Burns Park

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Oyster Bay Town Supervisor Joseph Saladino, Councilman Lou Imbroto, Councilwoman Vicki Walsh and Receiver of Taxes Jeffrey Pravato reunited near-drowning victims Vincent and Joseph LaGrega with Christopher Madden of Hicksville at John J. Burns Park in Massapequa. Town Highway employee Madden saved the lives of two teenagers after spotting them struggling in the strong currents of the Great South Bay.

Oyster Bay Town Supervisor Joseph Saladino, Councilman Lou Imbroto, Councilwoman Vicki Walsh and Receiver of Taxes Jeffrey Pravato reunited near-drowning victims Vincent and Joseph LaGrega with Christopher Madden of Hicksville at John J. Burns Park.
(Photo courtesy of the office of Supervisor Joseph Saladino)

“Our community takes great pride in recognizing the amazing actions of Christopher Madden, who displayed heroism during a time of crisis,” Saladino said. “Christopher’s quick thinking and courageous actions saved these teenagers lives and had he not responded as he did, the outcome would have been tragically different. Christopher Madden is not only a Good Samaritan, but an exemplary Town of Oyster Bay employee. We commend him for this lifesaving rescue.”

The 17-year-old LaGrega and his family were boating and attempted to anchor closer to the shore in the choppy water of the Great South Bay. LaGrega jumped into the water in an attempt to swim to the beach and underestimated the extremely challenging conditions. He was soon struggling and drifting further away from the boat, clearly in immediate danger of drowning. Brother Joseph jumped into the water hoping to save him, but soon both boys were in a weakened condition and being pummeled by the waves. At that moment, Madden spotted the struggling duo and jumped onto a jet ski to rescue both of the boys who were gasping for air at this point. Madden was able to bring the two boys back to the boat and the LaGrega family credits his actions with saving their sons’ lives that day.

Imbroto added, “It’s no secret that the Town enjoys the finest municipal workforce around, and now it’s clear that we also enjoy the most heroic. Christopher Madden went above and beyond the call of duty and saved Vincent’s life. I am honored to publicly commend Christopher for his amazing and courageous actions.”

Submitted by the Town of Oyster Bay

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